Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category

Saying Goodbye to Thailand…. Cambodia bound

January 3rd, 2010 | Personal, Travel

On this day we woke up early to get on a an all day long train ride. To be honest I was glad to have this day to be by myself. We were all together but we were on a train with the wind in hair and the sun on our skin and that is one of my favorite things. Rolling up the windows and turning on the AC wasn’t an option. For at least an hour of the first train ride I sat on the edge of the caboose hanging my feet off of the train listening to my ipod. Alone with my thoughts reflecting on all the insane things we had done and experienced and looking forward to the next adventures in Cambodia.

I orginally thought it was cool we were going to Cambodia but was most excited about Thailand. Turns out I LOVED Cambodia. Don’t get me wrong I could spend my whole life laying on Freedom Beach or any of the islands we were at or around on the day we  chartered a boat. But to be honest if I had to choose a place to waste my time in, it would have been Siem Reap, Cambodia.

These lily pads were in the river as we waked over a little walkway bridge to get to our rooms at The VN guesthouse. I loved them.

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We were all tired, the night before was pretty eventful. Several people went out and stayed out almost all night and the rest of us tried to pack while the electricity went on and off for long periods of time. Finally able to lay in the bed when some other noisy guest were having a great time and making sure everyone else heard! Here are some people resting at the train station waiting for the train.

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I didn’t take too many pictures during the time on the train. But here are a few. The one to the left is Erika looking so seriously out of the window. The other is of these two little boys who boarded the last train right before we arrived at the border town. They were so cute!! Letting us all take pictures of them. They must have felt like movie stars. Look at those smiles.

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We spent the night at a hotel in the border town. We couldn’t cross the border into Cambodia until morning. I soooo wish I had some video of that night. I was soooo delirious. I was talking crazy and if they didn’t know me better my new friends would have sworn I was drunk. A few of us went into the Karaoke room and I was exhausted and decided to go back to the room and go to sleep. I walked straight out of the door and into a glass wall. And I hit it hard!!!! There was a little Thai guy standing there with his jaw dropped and his arms out. I went back in the room to tell everyone, I was laughing so hard that I was crying. About 5 of the workers from the hotel walked in laughing out loud. When I finally got back up to leave again the workers held my hand to make sure I made it out okay. It made me laugh bc I know they thought I must have been wasted….. But I promise I wasn’t I don’t even drink.

Here is the Cambodian border. I love that it is a Kingdom.

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The smell at the broder was almost unbearable. And the children there begging was so sad. As we walked up Bobby warned us by saying “Hey guys…. These kids are so cute but they will take everything from your pockets so be careful”. As we were walking from building to building during the visa getting process we saw many locals carrying large things and hauling carts with goods back and forth across. It was so sad to see little kids barefooted pulling carts (much like a horse is the best way to put it).  This little guys cart wasn’t half as full as some of them.

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We arrived at the 2 Dragons guesthouse, and this is the owners son (4yrs old I think). He was sooo adorable. And very smart too.  On the right you will see the picture he was drawing, there were some snakes on there and I made a comment that they were scary and he quickly informed me in the cutest little voice that… “Rat snakes aren’t scary they eat Rats not people”

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These ducks were still alive……

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We took a Tuk-Tuk ride to Go watch the sunset at one of the Temple Ruins. These guys are victims of land mines. Bobby has said that they have held that same spot for 3 years. Here they are as we walked up to watch the sunset.

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You have to walk up some pretty steep steps….

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There were hundreds of people there to watch. Watching them was one of my favorite parts.

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How beautiful is that.

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The picture to the left reminds me of the Lion King.

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Here they are again still playing on our way out.

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4 comments
 
Muriel wrote:

Wow Amy!!! these are wonderful, looks like an amazing trip!

 [ Jan 21st, 2010 6:52 am ]
Leslie Lancaster wrote:

Wow, Amy!! Amazing 🙂

 [ Jan 17th, 2010 3:32 am ]
Amy Martin wrote:

Thanks Richelle… I guess there are some advantages of not being the BB 😉

 [ Jan 3rd, 2010 10:25 pm ]
Richelle wrote:

These are awesome!! I love the ones of the two boys from the train… they were so cute!! I love that I get to relive the trip as you post new blogs!

 [ Jan 3rd, 2010 10:19 pm ]

Don’t go chasing waterfalls….. (shout out to TLC)

December 30th, 2009 | Personal, Travel

Day# I cannot remember: Erawan Falls…  I loved these trees at the beginning of the trail. Here are Megan and I before the sweatfest began.

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This was a fun and challenging day. I knew we were going to get to see some really awesome waterfalls but what I did not know was that it was an intense hike to get to the top…. I was unprepared, I wore flip flops! My friend Richelle let me borrow the water shoes that she brought. THANK GOD FOR RICHELLE (she gets two links for that). I don’t think I would have made it without those shoes! Anyway at the bottom were a few little cascades and there were some little monkeys down there who would steal your food, and who are also apparently fierce! The first monkey I saw wouldn’t come down bc a local was there shaking the tree and throwing stuff at him. It made me kindof mad. There were tons of Thai people there. Apparently if you are Thai it cost over $400 less baht to get in than if you aren’t. Because of that, there were tons of locals there picnicking. Here is the first monkey that I got to feed. I was giving him huge chunks of watermelon, I figured he must be starved bc he kept coming back for more. A few minutes later I noticed these square shapes protruding from his neck… he was storing them.there like a chipmunk.

Notice the sign… Everytime I saw a monkey I would say Beware a Monkey steal your belongings…. It makes me smile.

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A local girl walking around at the bottom of one of the cascades.

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This was the first big waterfall we got to and one of my favorites. it was like a lagoon. I loved it. The only bad thing was there were these BIG fish who would nibble at your feet and legs… much like one of those fish pedicures, but I was not down with that!
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See it was pretty steep. And this was a good area where there were stairs. Most areas were giant rock that was hard to climb.

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We finally made it to the top and got to swim and play before making our way back down. This little guy was up there waiting on us, there was no food allowed up here but someone how I forgot something in my bag. I fed him some Colons…. Yes you read right Colons… they are like chocolate filled mini biscottis. Bobby called me a monkey killer, but I fed him anyway. See he has a little chocolate on his chin 🙂

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On our way back down we explored some of the falls that we passed up originally.Here are some rock slides. The first pictures shows some locals who were there having a great time. They all yelled Heeeeeeyyyyyy to us when we first walked up then they all cheered Go Go Go Go Go Go to me when I was scared to go down the rock slide. You can’t tell in the pictures but it was really steep. Oh and the guy in the middle, you know the one who looks like he is wearing speedos…. Nope … He is straight up wearing his Drawers/underwear/tighty blues or whatever you like to call them. I got to see them up close and personal on the rock slide 🙂

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And here I go…

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I loved this Bamboo with everyones etching in it.

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Geez I almost forgot to tell you about the monkey attack!!! Okay it wasn’t that bad but it was definitely hilarious!

So we all (well almost all about 10 of us) walked across this big log to where some monkeys were. There was a baby one at the other end who reached out and held bobby’s finger. Of course me the monkey lover asked who had some food left. Andrea said she had some melon and reached in her bag to get it and hand it to me… Apparently that is a sign of come eat to the monkeys (when someone reaches into a bag). Out of no where this big monkey swings from some trees and starts running down this log toward us…. I thought he was mad that Bobby was touching his baby…. I was wrong!!!!! He saw Andrea hand me that bag of melon. I was trying to hurry and grab a small piece of the melon out of the bag when he basically charges me and I go to hand him the piece of fruit and he swats the entire bag and grabs it and up the tree he goes…. LOL I still have a scab on my hand from where his dirty little fingers scratched me!! It was hilarious, everyone was freaking out as he was coming yelling GO GO GO get off the log!!! haha! I so wish someone had this on video! Any RPTE goers who read this please leave comments about this and how crazy funny it was! I know my story hasn’t done it justice!

Unlike the other Monkeys we met in Cambodia, these were definitely FIERCE 🙂

The guy to the left who is chilling on the scene of the crime, isn’t a fierce one, he is the one from the waterfall who followed us down. He looks pretty laid back.

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4 comments
 
Katie Lewis wrote:

Okay, I’m pretty sure that I nearly shoved Josh off the log to get out of there. I was under the impression that we had to go across this log to get down but apparently you all just had to see a baby monkey up close. One of those big monkeys jumped right behind me on the log and brushed by me and that was the end of that for me. I was off that log in a flash! I didn’t want my face to be ripped off by the fierce monkeys!

 [ Dec 30th, 2009 8:09 am ]
Nick Simcheck wrote:

Yes, the monkey snatching the bag was beyond hilarious!

Almost everybody except me (cause I’m smart :P) were standing on this huge log like 6′ in the air, and this monkey starts runnin… no, CHARGING in front of everybody with his eyes dead set on Amy. He sure got that bag too, I got pictures to prove it!

I thought for sure somebody was going to fall tough.

LOL I LOVE the censorship btw.

 [ Dec 30th, 2009 7:04 am ]
Meg wrote:

Love the pictures, Amy! And I just noticed the “Blower’s Daughter” playing here on your blog! If I ever get married, that’s the song I’d walk done the aisle to.

 [ Dec 30th, 2009 1:56 am ]
Bobby Earle wrote:

HA!!! I freaking LOVE the censor sign!!!!

 [ Dec 30th, 2009 1:45 am ]

Merry Christmas

December 25th, 2009 | Personal, Travel

Unless this is your first time on my blog, you know I just got back from Thailand and Cambodia. This was seriously the most amazing experience of my life. I have to agree with one of the other attendees that I had culture shock coming back to America rather than when I arrived in a foreign country. I went with 13 other people on this trip who were all strangers with the exception of 1 person. We all got to know each other by talking  for months via facebook, but in the LA airport was the first time I met them. For some people  that may seem scary but I loved it!  Anyway, I could go on and on and prob will over the next several blog posts but here is a teaser video from the trip. You can see me with my little Monkey friend at about the 2:38 point.

Raddest Phototrip Ever Teaser Video

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/8378922]

1 comment
 
claire wrote:

the clip of you with the monkey was hilarious! too cute! glad to have you back home in z-town~!

 [ Dec 25th, 2009 9:24 pm ]

Elephants, Tigers and Sunsets

December 23rd, 2009 | Travel

First off let me say that my day numbering system is totally off. I started counting on the 1st full day of activities which makes this day 3& 4… If you started from the beginning this is prob day 5 or 6…..So I am going to nix the whole numbering thing bc I am confused.

I left this off of the last post. Here is a picture of Bobby getting video of the ride home from Freedom beach at sunset, he has a really cool video of that that I will post a link to when available.

boobyWe Boarded a train the next morning for Kanchanaburi, Thailand. These two girls were on a passing train as we stopped at a local stop to pick up and let off some people. It was really cool to see a bunch of school kids on trains. They have to travel by train daily to get to school.

traingirlsWe arrived at the VN Guesthouse in just enough time to see the sunset over the water. Our rooms were on a raft much like a house boat, and felt pretty much like an old trailer camp on False river (for those of you in LA and know what I am talking about). This was the view from Cherish and I’s room on the raft 🙂

IMG_8243I might be wrong but I think the next day was the day that we went on elephant rides and to The Tiger Temple. And wouldn’t you know they had a snake here too. So a few people held this gigantic thing. I can’t remember which kind it was, but I know it was Albino bc I remember Bobby saying that in the wild it would never get this big bc it would be spotted easily and killed.

Here are bobby and Josh holding the snake. (you can’t really see Bobby really but he is holding that snake with its tongue out)

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We boarded our elephants. Richelle and I shared one. I basically sat ontop of her bc I thought that the seat was lopsided and it felt like we were going to fall off. It was really hot that day but we had a great time.  The shot to the right is one I snagged with Richelle’s 70-200L lense that I need (hint hint…)

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Our elephant “driver” (for lack of a better word) lived in a hut on the property where the elephants were. The house on the right was his. This is how most of the houses are in Cambodia. Actually that might even be considered a mid range as far as how nice it was. I saw many houses that people lived in that would make that hut look like a palace. Makes you realize how lucky we are but also how unnecessarily huge our houses are.

elephant2These kiddos were running around playing and the guy yelled at them to go on, but I motioned for them to group together for this picture.

elephant3 After the trek through the jungle area, we were brought over to a river where we got to get on the elephants in the river and “bathe”” them with a little scrub brush. I don’t have any pictures of that bc I was in the water. The picture to the left gives you an idea of what it was like. The picture to the right is a little baby elephant who was digging in Erin’s bag. It was so cute.

elephant4IMG_8452-1elepant5Bobby and Lindsay’s elepant “driver” made them little hats… I was jealous. here I am with the RPTE queen 🙂

elepant6After the Elephants we got some lunch and headed out to Tiger Temple. I was really looking forward to this. Ever since I was a kid I wanted to have a pet tiger.

Tiger2We got to walk around and take a picture with several of the big ones. This is the only picture where I dont look stupid and there happen to be 2 tigers in it so thats a bonus 🙂

tiger1The tiger temple is run by Monks. They handle the tigers. Here is one of the Monks getting some tiger lovin…

Tiger3Here I am with the younger tiger. The monk told me to kiss him (the tiger not himself) right after this. Tiger fur feels gritty.

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This guy was on the sidelines. My friend Nick asked him if we could take his picture. Monks are usually off limits especially to women. We took several pictures of him and he looked over and said “movie star” then asked us where we were from. He asked me to give him my address that he always wanted to come to America. I laughed and said well can you babysit? and he said only in the mornings!

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After all of the tiger activities, they bring out a dumptruck of some pumpkin looking fuit and dump it all along this dirt road and hundreds of cattle and some other animals come out to eat it. There were several roosters, so I again borrowed Richelle’s lens so I could get a good picture of one. those little things are fast so it took me several tries and alot of running around. Bobby was laughing at me and asked… “Do they not have Roosters in Louisiana?” I then explained that my mom liked roosters so I wanted to get a good picture for her.

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4 comments
 
Laura Hoffmann wrote:

Oh my goodness! I would’ve never thought traveling to Cambodia would be so awe inspiring! Love the shots, they really tempt me to jump on a plane and visit right now. 🙂

 [ Oct 29th, 2010 10:37 pm ]
Rhiona wrote:

Awesome stuff! I love love love the close up elephant series.

 [ Dec 24th, 2009 12:20 am ]
Richelle wrote:

Awesome post! So glad my lens came in handy. =) I LOVE your rooster shot and your elephant shots and the hut shots and, well, all of them!

 [ Dec 24th, 2009 12:12 am ]
Bobby Earle wrote:

Amy. That double shot of the monk kissing/hugging the tiger?! Might be my favorite set from the entire trip out of anyone. Oh my gosh! It’s amazing.

 [ Dec 24th, 2009 12:08 am ]

Raddest Photo Trip Ever Day 2: Cobra Show & Freedom Beach

December 17th, 2009 | Personal, Travel

This is a little late with the day 2 now that I am on prob day 10. But here it is anyway. This day we got up and went to the Cobra show. There were several different kinds of animals here. There was an otter running around, snakes everywhere (in cages), alligator and other things that I can’t remember.

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This guy was insane. Literally! He was completely drunk when we got there and showed us all his snake bites. One of his fingers is completely frozen in a position where it sticks up. He said it was from a king cobra bite and that he almost died when he got bit.

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Here are some of my friends with snakes. Cherish, Nick & Hollywood…I mean Hannah

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This is the resident cutie at the Cobra Show place. They put the snake around his neck to show off after the show, and when they went to take it off he held tight and started crying bc he wanted to keep it on.

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After the Cobra show we went back to our rooms and then had lunch and headed out to the beach. On the way to the beach, we stopped to see these elephants on the side of the road. They were so cute, but it was a little sad. The big one was chained into the ground and the lady would pinch the small one to make her sit for pictures. We fussed and told her not to do it. It was really sad.

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So we went to a beach to ride a longtail out to a different private one called Freedom Beach. It was amazing just a stretch of beach about a mile long (maybe less) they had a volleyball net and a little restaurant. It was so quaint. I didn’t take a ton of pictures of us there bc we were out in the ocean enjoying the water and the colorful fish swimming by.

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Megan and I went on a walk up what felt like a bazillion stairs and took a few shots. Here is a shot that shows you Freedom Beach, a place I hope to go back to one day. Down below you can see the rest of the crew. They look like little ants down there. They had a volleyball match with the little ladies who worked there on the island.

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Here are 2 different views of the sunset at Freedom Beach. It is amazing how different something can look just by changing your camera settings. There is no big photoshop manipulations, this is basically out of the camera.

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This is one of my favorite shots of the trip. There are no words for how beautiful I think it is.

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Hope you have enjoyed this edition of be jealous of where I am (kidding 🙂 )

Next up: Elephants and Tigers!

~Amy

4 comments
 
Kim Charlet wrote:

Beautiful! Fabulous pictures! I felt like I experienced the culture. And, I am jealous… that little boy with that big SMILE and teeth! AHHHHH!

 [ Jan 19th, 2010 8:15 pm ]
Bobby Earle wrote:

Freaking love it!

 [ Dec 22nd, 2009 2:02 am ]
Jodie wrote:

Such beautiful pictures Amy!

 [ Dec 19th, 2009 6:22 am ]
Elizabeth Knazs wrote:

Absolutely Amazing! Beautiful work Amy, no words describe how wonderful these are!

 [ Dec 17th, 2009 1:25 pm ]

Paradise: Raddest Phototrip Ever Day 1- Phuket, Thailand

December 13th, 2009 | Personal, Travel, Uncategorized

As many of you may know I am on the Raddest Phototrip Ever with Bobby Earle. I have been looking forward to this trip ever since I signed up for it at the begininng of the year. I didn’t write too much about it here on the blog because it seemed to good to be true! i was afraid something would happen and I would not be able to go. But here I am and it is truly the trip of a lifetime.

I am finally taking a little time to stay in the room to blog some images. All of these images were taken on our first full day in Thailand. We had to be up at 4am after having travelled for about 30 hours. We chartered a boat with  Crystal Clear Thailand. Alex was THE BEST! It was pitch black outside when we left to go in the middle of the ocean. I wasn’t nervous about it all though. The water was insanely choppy.  The boat was going up and down and I all of a sudden got motion sickness. I wanted to die! It was horrible.  Imagine being in the middle of the ocean in Thailand, it’s pitch black outside, feeling sick and the boat is slamming up and down…. crazy! Thank God it went away fast. The sun came up and all was well after that. Alex explained that his captain can read the ocean and that 9 out of 10 people would have went back. I am so glad that we didn’t because it was an amazing day! The weather was perfect!!! We island hopped the islands off the coast of phuket.

This first picture is the sunrise over the huge rocks out there and our “captain”

IMG_7092Totally worth the few minutes of wanting to die…. Agree? These were taken in or around, Maya Bay, Phi Phi Island and Monkey Island.

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This was taken on Phi Phi Island where we did some shopping. There was a little restaurant that had these papers all over the wall. I especially liked the one here in the center that says Believe everything written on this wall.

IMG_7294This was on the opposite side of Phi Phi Island from where we docked. The water was only waist to chest deep almost all the way out to those rocks in the background. We had a great time just lounging out there in the sun.  Here is a photo of some of my new friends and one old one 😉 Cherish, Erika, Erin &  Megan

IMG_7350My oh my… How cute are these monkeys???? This is my new friend Josh. He is an amazing photographer out in Santa Barbara.  Cherish took photos of me with the monkeys maybe I will get them soon and add them. This was monkey beach. It is a tiny piece of sand on the edge of one of those rocks and has lots of monkeys who love tourists and their bananas.  There were a couple little babies that were so cute that I wanted to put them in my luggage and take them home.

IMG_7388This last picture is Alex, who not only took us on an amazing boat ride the whole day, but also gave us good ideas for our trip and even took us all out to dinner at this reggae resturant. We had the best time! The picture to the left was something someone wrote on a post there. I just loved it. It wasn’t a place that had things written everywhere, so that message was just cool to me.IMG_7446

1 comment
 
Anthony Mark Burns wrote:

I love your work Amy!! These pictures are amazing.

 [ Dec 14th, 2009 9:31 pm ]


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